Monday, December 10, 2018

Westport, Illinois, Businesses 1950's

Who remembers these businesses located in Westport, Illinois
just across the bridge from Vincennes, Indiana?

Sunday, December 9, 2018

A Moment in Time- Schrader Tree Farm

If your phone will not show the video, then click here

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Responses to Bridgeport Photos

If you have not completed your letter to Santa yet, you might ask that he bring you some of the books published by the Lawrence County Historical Society.  Stop by the Research Library, the History Center, or the Finishing Touch to browse through the selection.    You may also see them on the website.

In response to our request to identify the Bridgeport photographs:
R Peneton, who was mayor of Bridgeport when these photographs were taken says:
"Top picture south of the alley, various businesses were there after Stanley Gainer had a grocery store in 50's. Bridgeport Leader was there in late 70's.  North of alley was Cook's restaurant, first ran by Jay Cook and later by brother, John Cook. Next was Bill Catteron's pool room, and later was cabinet shop ran by Jim Cook.
Next was Sperry's variety store with two entrances.  Kroger store was on the corner and later Roy Sizemore had grocery store. The upstairs of these businesses was Rice apartments. The buildings were purchased by the City and torn down about 1980. The second picture Is same view from different angle."

J Hamilton said:  "In the late 1930s and into the mid 1940s, from right:  Kroger Store, then ?; Rice’s Variety, then Sperry’s Variety; pool hall (forget name); Kristikas (sp?) candy store, then Cookies soda shop. The Zanitis family had a candy/soda shop in that last building on the left, between Kristikas and Cookies.

A Dale said: I don't know the businesses in 1978. In the '50s, top picture, from left to right, car in front of Hamp Johnson's city cigar store and pool room, Cook's Confectionery owned by Johnny Cook and family, Bill Catron's pool room, Rices/Sperry's dime store, Krogers on corner. Across Chestnut St, Frank Bangart's Rexall Drugs. When I was two years old my dad took me into Hamp Johnson's, sat me on a high stool and gave me a bottle of chocolate pop.  Bill Catron was married to the oldest Cox girl, sister of Norma Cox Staver. In the late '30s, my dad, Glenn Dale, and Bob Quayle were co- managers of Krogers. My dad left Krogers for a bread delivery route. Andy Rooney's bread bakery was located south across the street from the Methodist Church. I clearly remember my dad taking me into the bakery in 1940 when I was two years old. I saw men in white pants, white T shirts and white caps dumping large bags of flour into a mixer. The bakery went bankrupt and then Andy Rooney started the highly successful Golden Rule Insurance Co. Bob Quayle left Krogers and started his own grocery in Olney. Bob was killed in a car wreck in the mid '50s.   

Thank you for your detective work.
Shoppers:   These two mastodons would love to have a new home for Christmas.  We sold similar ones during the Waterways Exhibit, but these two remain.  The price was $25 but now it is $15.00, plus shipping, if they leave Lawrenceville via the post office. 

Friday, December 7, 2018

Cow Pictures

The History Center is collecting photographs of "people and cows".  The top two are from the Griggs/Cunningham Photograph Collection. The one, directly below, was taken on the J.C. Piper Walnut Ridge Farm in 1940. 

The one below was taken on John C King's farm in the 1920's. 
The last one is a photograph of four of the cows 'residing' at the Madding Dairy.  

If, in your family albums, you have a "cow" picture, we would appreciate a high quality scan of it, please.   

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Lemeron Builds Experimental Airplane 1962

 Vincennes Sun Commercial

June 3, 1962


The Lawrenceville City Airport at George Field has a new attraction these days – a hand built experimental airplane that zooms across the field at nearly 200 mph and climbs in one observer's word, "like a homesick angel." The tiny single-engine plane was completed a few weeks ago, by Herschel Lemeron, a pipe fitter and welder from Birds, Illinois. Lemeron estimates that it cost him about $3000 in materials and 2000 hours of time. "But I don't think I'd sell it for anything now," he adds.

The plane is a "Tailwind" model, built from the plans of Steve Wittman of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, whom Lemeron calls "one of the top race men and best designers in the country." Wittman's original "Tailwind" weighed only 685 pounds, but Lemeron's carries some extra upholstery and fittings, that raises its weight to 850 pounds.

It will do more than 150 mph in level flight and 200 mph in the dive. The plane is powered by a 125- hp. engine converted for aircraft use. It climbs at a rate of 2000 ft per minute. Building it, in some ways, was similar to building model airplanes "except that most guys who build model airplanes never learn to weld," Lemeron said.

The plane measures 20'11" from wingtip to wingtip and 19'3" in length. Lemeron, began welding the tubing frame together in his garage on October 25, 1959. He began with the sides of the fuselage which he laid out on plywood patterns running the length of his garage, and then spot-welded. After that, came the ticklish task – familiar to all model airplane builders –of forming the two sides and welding the cross members between them.

"That's where my wife came in. She held them while I welded," Lemeron, said. Mrs. Lemeron, he added, is anxious to ride in the two-seater but can't, until he finishes his 75- hour test period. With the fuselage frame and landing gear finished, Lemeron turned to the wings which were made of plywood molded and glued over spruce ribs, and then covered with fabric.

Lemeron said the building of the aircraft went off with very few hitches. "When I didn't know something, I would just go to somebody for advice," he explained. One feature that Lemeron added to the original plan that did give him some trouble was the streamlined aluminum coverings for the landing gear. These had to be shaped by hand to an exact contour.

Before any covering went on though, the craft got its first inspection from the FAA representative R. O. Laakman.  Inspection was rigid but Lemeron called Laakman "one of the finest inspectors I've seen." "After he got interested in it, he was up here, whenever he had a chance," he noted.

Laakman made a final inspection several weeks ago, and gave the go-ahead for Lemeron to fly the plane. Until he has completed 75 hours in it, he must keep within an area stretching from about 25 miles wide and about 25 miles north of George Field to 15 miles south.

After that, the limits will be off, and Lemeron already has an idea of where he wants to go. "I built this plane was just one purpose – to go to California where my son lives," he said.

He also hopes that his work will inspire other flyers to build their own planes, and stimulate interest in the George Field Chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association. He plans to take his "Tailwind" to the annual "fly in" of the experimental aircraft at Rockford, Illinois, next August.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Christmas Letters from 1909

Lawrenceville Republican
December 16, 1909

Dear Santa, I am Mildred, Jewell’s little sister. I go to Conover School. Please bring me a doll and just any old kind of candy, oranges and peanuts and I’ll love you forever. Mildred McCarty 

Russellville, Illinois, December 10, 1909, Dear Santa, I am a little girl eight-years-old. I wish you would bring me some leggings for Christmas and some candy and oranges and bananas and some peanuts. Please don’t forget. Esther Sprinkell

Dear old Candy man, Guess I am a new one for I have never written to you before. Please send me a red wagon I won’t ask for much, so you will be sure to send it. I am seven-years-old, and I live close to Grandma’s. I’ll not peep so don’t be backwards about coming. Lawrence Mills

December 10, 1909 Dear Santa, I am a little girl eight-year-old. I am looking forth to the pleasure to the time for you to come. Please bring me a doll, some nice story books and a ring. I will close hoping you will not forget to come to Russellville. Jennie Mickey

Harriet J McGaughey 1919-1991
Daughter of Guy McGaughey SR.
Russellville, Illinois December 10, 1909, Dear Santa, I am looking for the time for you to come and bring me a toy train, fire crackers, Candies, nuts oranges and a toy horse and wagon. I will close this time hoping you will not forget me. Your little friend, Amasa Mickey        

Dear Santa, I am Lawrence’s cousin and I live at their house. We are twins for I am seven-years-old too. I would like to have a doll that shuts its eyes and a cradle, I would like to see you when you come but Lawrence says we mustn’t peep. Your little friend, Lucille Delong 

Russellville, Illinois December 10, 1909, Dear Santa, I am a little girl nine-years-old. I wish you would bring me a set of dishes for Christmas and I would like you to bring me a big sleeping doll with curly hair and dressed in red silk. I want a doll cradle and a folding bed and a doll buggy. I want you to bring me a red sweater coat. I would like for you to bring me some stencils for Christmas and a story book. I go to school every day. I am your little girl, Lois Wagonseller.

(Ed Note:  Bring your little girl and see our dolls in the Dunseth Doll Collection over the holiday season.)  

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Bridgeport Downtown 1978

Downtown Bridgeport in Lawrence County Christmas 1978

History Detectives, will you help identify the businesses that would have been located in these buildings, please?